Illinois President Re-Elected Despite Kickback Accusation

The word of Bill Dugan proved more believable than that of his accusers – at least to most members of International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150.  Dugan on August 25 was re-elected to his eighth term as president and business manager of the suburban Chicago local in the face of allegations from about 125 members that he’d been accepting monthly kickbacks of $100 each.  Receiving 61 percent of the vote, Dugan denied wrongdoing, insisting that a lawsuit filed earlier this year by dissenters against him was politically motivated.  Still, the lawsuit remains in force, which suggests that the dissenters, led by challenger Joe Ward, might have a point or two.  The 22,000-member Local 150, based in Countryside, Ill., represents operators of cranes, backhoes, bulldozers and other equipment in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa.  (Chicago Tribune, 8/28/07).  


Former Secretary-Treasurer

Retired Maryland Officer Pleads Guilty to Thefts

Of all the motives for corruption by union officials and members, few are more disheartening, or these days common, as the need to cover gambling losses.  Donald Lee Travis, a retired officer with the Frederick, Md. police force, is the latest example.  Travis, 67, pleaded guilty in Frederick County Circuit Court on February 6 to embezzling at least $45,000 from his Fraternal Order of Police lodge to support a slot-machine habit, receiving a suspended five-year sentence.  A 30-year veteran of the force, he admitted he stole from the lodge, which he managed during 2004 and 2005.  He regularly played the slot machines at Charles Town Races and Slots, located in nearby Charles Town, West Virginia, spending around $500 to $600 per trip.  Travis should have bet on the horses – or found something else to do.  (Associated Press, 2/7/07).


Ex-Milwaukee Local Bosses Charged